There are no hard and fast rules here, and it also depends how good you were at some things in the first place, but some of the warning signs that there may be a problem could be:
  • Recent memory loss that affects daily life such as forgetting work meetings or names and telephone numbers and then not remembering them later
  • Forgetting how to do simple everyday tasks such as setting the table
  • Problems with language such as forgetting the meaning of simple words or using them inappropriately
  • Becoming confused in familiar surroundings or losing a sense of time
  • Difficulty in calculating numbers, handling money or thinking conceptually
  • Placing items in the wrong places such as the iron in the freezer and then being unable to find them again
  • Rapid, unexplained mood swings
  • Changes in the person's normal responsibility
  • Becoming passive or reluctant to get involved in activities

It is important to realise that these behavioural changes may occur in other forms of dementia that may be treatable by the doctor such as an infection, anaemia, or thyroid problems or which have a different cause such as excessive alcohol consumption. If you, or someone you know is experiencing any of these symptoms, please see a doctor for a proper diagnosis and help.